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NEWS: WTO pushes for outline of deal by July, ministerial to follow December 15-17

Reuters reports that, “Two dozen trade ministers met on Saturday (January 29) to review progress on finishing the Doha round after seven major trading powers agreed to push for a deal in the decade-old talks by July. …(Australia, Brazil, China, the European Union, India, Japan and the United States) agreed (in Davos to make the necessary concessions, compromises and trade-offs) and push for an outline agreement by the summer. …(The discussion took) place as World Trade Organization members intensify efforts to finally clinch a deal.”

“EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht…said ministers would tell their officials they must do what it takes to negotiate a deal, leaving just a few key political issues for ministers to handle in the final stage. …July would not be a final agreement, but the broad outlines of a deal, such as formulas for cutting tariffs, and major exceptions to that, leaving the rest of the year for negotiators to fill in the details. That would still make it possible to (have the) complete agreement wrapped up at the WTO’s ministerial conference December (15-17).”

Bloomberg reports this morning that, “World Trade Organization members engaged in the Doha round of trade talks agree on about 80 percent of the issues, and the remainder are solvable, Pascal Lamy, director general of the organization, told Le Matin.”

For Council of Canadians analysis on the World Trade Organization, please go to http://canadians.org/WTO.

The Vancouver Sun article is at http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Trade+ministers+review+Doha+deal+push/4190953/story.html. The Bloomberg article is at http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-02-13/wto-s-lamy-says-countries-agree-on-80-of-issues-matin-says.html.